Mavenir executes some layoffs related to RCS disappointment

A director of strategic marketing and business development at Mavenir made a posting yesterday on LinkedIn, alluding to some layoffs at Mavenir.

Ryan Salm wrote, “As of the end of the month I will be looking for a new role and would appreciate your support…. #layoffs”

Mavenir declined to specify how many people it was laying off. But its President and CEO Pardeep Kohli sent the following comment to Fierce Wireless: “In 2023, as other technology companies are doing, given the current market concerns about the economy and geopolitical challenges, Mavenir is streamlining and reevaluating programs and investments. We see significant reduction in RCS Network Systems demand outside North America, and we are adjusting programs accordingly.”

Rich Communications Services (RCS) is a protocol between mobile telephone carriers and between phone and carrier, designed to replacing SMS messages with a text-message system that is richer.

A couple of years ago, Mavenir was bullish on its RCS technology, announcing that it completed RCS interconnection with the networks of Telefónica, Vodafone and Deutsche Telekom Germany.

Today, Kohli said Mavenir was the first to launch RCS in the U.S. with Metro PCS. And the expectation was that all SMS/MMS traffic would migrate to RCS over time. But with Apple not providing support for RCS, it is now limited to only Android handsets.

“Mavenir is a leader in RCS market share in the U.S.,” said Kohli. “However, there is not much growth on Android ecosystem in U.S.”
He also said the Android ecosystem outside of the U.S. is growing well, but the RCS ecosystem outside of the U.S. is not open anymore. “Based on policies of companies that control the Android ecosystem, the RCS client on the Android phones is now limited to work with only one dedicated backend, and there is no opportunity for Mavenir to sell RCS network systems as sold in U.S. This has significantly impacted our RCS business.”

Open RAN

Mavenir is heavily involved in the open radio access network (open RAN) ecosystem. But this current round of layoffs doesn’t seem to have anything to do with open RAN.

Kohli said “We continue to invest in our other strategic growth portfolio areas that include OpenRAN/Radio, Converged Mobile Core/IMS and BSS. The focus is on restructuring of cost base and operations, in line with the market growth and customer demands for 5G without any changes to our growth portfolio.”

The company has previously told Fierce that it makes the bulk of its revenues from IMS core and packet core technologies.